Highly anticipated is the July 13 launch of the new Crystal River Cruises’ first vessel, the 160-passenger Crystal Mozart, with 10- and 11-night itineraries plus holiday sailings on the Danube River. Formerly the MS Mozart, the ship is being redesigned and updated to Crystal standards; all suites feature king beds, an industry first. Double the width of the average European river boat, Crystal Mozart was built specifically for the wider locks between Passau, Germany, and Budapest, Hungary. Travelers will discover a single level of public spaces, including multiple dining rooms, a spa and fitness center, indoor pool, salon, library and a wrap-around promenade.
Suites to Book
Top digs? We’d reserve one of the sumptuous 860-square-foot, two-bedroom Crystal Suites on Deck 2. Very unusual is a cozy fireplace in the living room. Above it is a wall-mounted TV, and the living area also boasts a sofa, two armchairs, refrigerator, Espresso machine, dining table with four chairs and a French balcony. Crystal Suite master bedrooms feature Egyptian cotton linens, the king bed (convertible to two twins), walk-in closet, arm chair, vanity area, flat-screen pop-up TV and a bathroom with double vanity, shower and separate whirlpool tub. Among the Crystal Suite amenities are butler service, a refrigerator, Nespresso coffee machine, and hors d’oeuvres and canapés.
Four new all-suite Crystal River Cruises vessels also are under construction at Lloyd Werft, the German shipyard recently purchased by Genting Hong Kong, Crystal’s parent firm. Starting in summer 2017, the 110-passenger Crystal Bach will sail the Rhine River, while Crystal Mahler will cruise the Rhine, Main and Danube rivers. The new 84-passenger Crystal Debussy will sail the Seine. Sister Crystal Ravel will ply the Garonne/Dordogne rivers and Gironde Estuary, with an opportunity for seafood-loving guests to taste the region’s famous Arcachon oysters.
Crystal’s “new builds” will all be designed with one level of public areas, including dining spaces, a spa, fitness center and library. Hot spot? We can’t wait to see the Palm Court with its dance floor and glass-domed roof. Accommodations-wise, the four new ships will have 220-square-foot suites, 250-square-foot Deluxe Suites, a 500-square-foot Penthouse Suite and one 750-square-foot, two-bedroom Crystal Suite, all with king beds, walk-in wardrobes and bathrooms with double vanities.
While in Port
During port days, guests participating on Crystal Adventures can ride in style in new motorcoaches with business-class-style seating and complimentary Wi-Fi. One new Active Exploration Adventure will be offered on port days as well, and for independent exploration, Segways and electric and manual bicycles will be available. A luxury tender will provide a private yacht-like experience and take guests to secluded spots.
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